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Ventana Arroyo Seco Estate Chardonnay 2013

Chardonnay from Arroyo Seco, Monterey, Central Coast, California
  • TP90
14.2% ABV
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14.2% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Ventana's Chardonnay is light, yet fresh and focused, displaying tropical fruit notes of pineapple and mango. It is well balanced and tastes of Gala apple, pear and spicy floral tones. Light oak notes lead to hints of vanilla and honey highlights. The perfect balance of fruit, oak and acidity makes this an exceptional sipping and food friendly Chardonnay.

Critical Acclaim

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TP 90
Tasting Panel
Smooth pear nose; silky and bright with crisp pear, tropical fruit and fine texture; clean, fresh and bright with fruit forward and lovely balance.
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Ventana

Ventana

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Ventana, Arroyo Seco, Monterey, Central Coast, California
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Great wines are made in the vineyard, and the Ventana Vineyard has the perfect combination of water, soil, climate, art and science to create superb, world-class wines. Ventana is known for its unique planting style and phenomenal Estate wines. This sought after vineyard is owned by a small group of local growers who have lived and worked in the region for generations. It is tended by Steve McIntyre of Monterey Pacific, who has brought innovative sustainable farming practices to the vineyard.

The Ventana Vineyard was planted in 1974. The vineyard was named "Ventana," Spanish for "window," because the vineyard lies up against the Ventana Wilderness in Monterey County, but also because it symbolized a "window to the future" in California viticulture. At the time, there were very few vineyards in the area, but today, Monterey has taken its rightful place beside Napa and Sonoma as one of the great wine regions of California.

Arroyo Seco

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Named after the dramatic, seasonal river of rain and snowmelt that cuts through the upper elevations of the Santa Lucia Mountains, the Arroyo Seco AVA (American Viticultural Area) extends east from this resulting mountain gorge on its western side, and into the rural and warm Salinas Valley. During the growing season, cool and damp Pacific Ocean air penetrates the gorge and flows into the valley, creating a cool evening respite for vineyards after hot summer days. This natural water-release has also created a subterranean aquifer, which helps set the foundation of AVA's boundaries and supplies the vineyards with water.

Arroyo Seco was actually home to the first commercial vineyard in California, called Mission Ranch, which was owned and propogated by the Mirassou family in the 1960s.

Chardonnay is most widely grown here. But as one of Monterey’s warmer regions, Arroyo Seco enjoys the highest praise for its reds, namely Bordeaux blends.

Arroyo Seco is one of the oldest AVAs in California, its status granted in the early 1980s, and also remains one of its smallest.

Chardonnay

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One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it’s grown and how it’s made. In Burgundy, Chardonnay produces some of the finest white wines in the world, typically tending towards minimal intervention in the winery and at its best resulting in remarkable longevity. This grape is popular throughout the world, but perhaps its second most important home is in California, where both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines enjoy great popularity. Oregon, Australia, South America, South Africa, and New Zealand are also significant producers of Chardonnay.

In the Glass

When planted on cool sites, Chardonnay’s flavors tend towards grapefruit, green apple, minerals, and white stone fruit, while warmer locations coax out richer, more tropical flavors of fig, melon, and pineapple. Oak can add notes of vanilla, coconut, and spice (as well as texture), while malolactic fermentation can impart soft, buttery acidity.

Perfect Pairings

Chardonnay is as versatile at the table as it is in the vineyard. The crisp, clean, Chablis-like styles go well with simple seafood, light chicken dishes, and salads. Richer Chardonnays marry well with cream or oil-based sauces.

Sommelier Secret

Since the 1990s, big, oaky, buttery Chardonnays from California have enjoyed explosive popularity. More recently, the pendulum has begun to swing in the opposite direction, towards a clean, crisp style that rarely utilizes new oak. These Old-World style wines have been dubbed the “New California Chardonnays,” and anyone who claims they do not like Chardonnay should give them a try.

HNYVENCHY13C_2013 Item# 136148